40+ Beautiful Book Tattoo Ideas for Every Bibliophile

By Jason Hamilton / September 2, 2018
book tattoo wrist
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Tattoos aren’t just a piece of body art that’s used to make you stand out from the rest. Getting inked can also help you represent your love or passion about something. A book tattoo, for instance, is something that bibliophiles would love to have as it can express their love for books.

But just because they love books doesn’t mean they are the only ones who can have such tattoo inked on their body. Those who love writing can use such design for their body art too.

Tattoos are supposed to be the designs that are meaningful for you so you won’t regret having it over time. If you love reading or writing, book tattoos are much recommended for you for that timeless body art. You don’t have to look further, though, as we’ve already listed the best book tattoo ideas that you’ll definitely love.


The Tattoo History

For thousands of years, tattoos have been a part of our history. In fact, the earliest tattoo recorded was dated to at circa more than 5,000 years old.

For our ancestors, it served as a status symbol, protection from any harm, or an adornment. In some areas, it can serve as a form of punishment. In Japan, for instance, during the Edo Period, tattoos are inked on the face of the criminals. Though tattooing was widespread around the Eastern part of the world, it wasn’t fully accepted in the West during the ancient times.


Sometime around the 1860s, it was only then fully accepted in England after the Prince of Wales got inked with a cross symbol as he participated in a Medieval ritual. Ten years after and the tattooing practice started budding in America.

Initially, back then, tattoo served as a way to show people their rank in the society or how patriotic they are. But today, we can now use such body art to show a part of ourselves.


Is Getting Inked Painful?

Even if tattoo artists now have machines to help them insert the pigment into the skin, we still can’t promise you that tattoos will not hurt a lot. All tattoos will hurt as needles are used to penetrate your skin to insert the pigment. But know that the pain that a tattoo could cause you varies, depending on how detailed a tattoo design is. Thus, the more complex it is, the longer you feel the pain plus the more painful it will be.

Aside from that, the placement matters as well. There are spots that will cause you pain while there are also spots that will make you feel more pain. Therefore, you always have to think first before you ink yourself. If you are one of the brave hearts to get tattooed, here are the 40+ top book tattoo ideas that you’ll definitely want to have.


Book Tattoo Variations for Men and Women

Book tattoos are very gender-neutral. As long as you love reading books or writing, a book tattoo will suit you. It’s also a piece you’ll forever love as it will never go out of style. Here are some of the best variations of book tattoos that we can recommend for you.

Your Favorite Line

We all have a favorite line from books. It may be because it described our exact emotion or situation the moment we read it or it just opened our eyes to something that we weren’t able to see at first. These sentences can be used as a book tattoo design to show others how a certain book inspired or changed you.


A book tattoo variation where a line from the book, “The Bell Jar,” by Sylvia Plath was inked on the arms.


A quoted line from the book, “Le Petit Prince” (a.k.a “The Little Prince”), that translates to, “‘Nobody is perfect,’ sighed the fox.”

A quoted line from the children’s book, “The Giving Tree.”


A line from John Green’s novel, “The Fault in Our Stars.”

A motivational book tattoo from the book, “To Kill a Mocking Bird.”


A book tattoo for the fans of the novel and hit movie, “Lord of the Rings.”

Your Favorite Characters or Illustration

Just as how we loved certain lines from a novel, you probably have a favorite character or illustration from your favorite book too. You can use these characters or illustration as a body art as well for a more artistic design.

The famous potions that Alice in “Alice in Wonderland” took.

The antagonist of Herman Melville’s novel titled “Moby Dick” with a line quoted from the book as well.


A book tattoo illustration of a symbol of the novel, “The Great Gatsby,” to represent hope and dreams for the future.

A colored “Le Petit Prince” book tattoo showing two of the characters of the novel.


Another “Le Petit Prince” inspired book tattoo featuring the famous elephant inside a boa constrictor illustration from the book.

A “Ramona” book tattoo from the novel named after the main character, Ramona Quimby.

Your Favorite Book’s Title

Some books are so iconic that even its title can already speak to you. If you have a favorite book, you can also use it as your tattoo design.


A title of a book tattoo that’s probably the wearer’s favorite novel.


A title of a book tattoo that also used the same font as the book’s cover.

A book tattoo that shows the title of the owner’s favorite novel written by Laurie Halse Anderson.


A “Harry Potter” book title tattoo that used the same font as one of the books released.

Your Favorite Book’s Cover

Some books have covers that are just as good as its content. These artistic and creative covers become t-shirt designs and even bags’ designs. What’s even better is that you can use it on your body too.

The iconic image of “The Little Prince” used as a book tattoo.

A children’s book titled “Bunnicula: A Rabbit-Tale of Mystery” book tattoo.


Lewis Carroll’s childhood classic book “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” book tattoo cover.

A cover of “All my Friends are Dead” used as a book tattoo.


For women who have a favorite fairy tale, this “Cinderella” book tattoo will make you jealous.

Stack of Books

Choosing a favorite book when you love all of the novels you’ve read is hard. If you have a lot of favorite books, then a symbol to represent them will do too.


A small stack of multicolored book tattoo on the arm.

Another stacked colored book tattoo but with a meaningful quote.

A black and grey ink stacked book tattoo with fluttering pages.

Another colored stacked book tattoo but drawn using the watercolor effect.

A black and grey book tattoo with a wine drawn on top.

Another stacked book tattoo with good dotwork and a cup of coffee on top.

Ideal Placements for Book Tattoos

Where you place your tattoo matters. It doesn’t just determine the pain you’re going to feel during the tattooing process but it could also give more meaning or reminder to you.


For book tattoos and other tattoo designs that can inspire you, it’s safe to always place it on the wrist. It’s not just a spot to easily show off your body rt but it’s also a good place for your tattoo to remind you about its message or meaning.

A book tattoo on the wrist, quoting a line from “The Winner’s Curse.”

Another black ink quoted book tattoo on the inner part of the wrist.

A black ink quote from “Throne of Glass” book tattoo.

A simple book tattoo showing the famous symbol from “Harry Potter” novel.

Another illustration type of book tattoo from the book “The Little Prince.”

Inner Forearm

The inner forearm is also a good spot to place a tattoo as anything inked here can be easily seen. This way, it’s also easier to be reminded of your favorite book or line that inspires you to be a better person.

A colored book tattoo with various symbols inked on the inner forearm.

A book tattoo quoted from John Green’s novel, “The Fault in our Stars.”

A black ink stacked book tattoo on the inner forearm.

A matching book tattoo using one of “The Little Prince”s illustrations.

Another stacked book tattoo but this time, it has three dimensions.

A colored stacked book tattoo that seems a bit 3D.


The triceps is also a good spot to place book tattoo. However, it’s not for those who want to be reminded of their tattoos. Rather, it’s for those who want to show their tattoos to others.

A colored book tattoo on the tricep with a cup of tea on top.

A simple but big book tattoo that stretches down near the elbow.

A book tattoo using an illustration of the protagonist in “Alice in Wonderland.”

A book tattoo inspired by the illustration from “Harry Potter.”


The neck is one of the most exposed spots on our body. Thus, if you want your book tattoo to always show, placing it on the neck area should do the trick.

A book tattoo with a heart on one page to symbolize the owner’s love for books.

Another book tattoo using an illustration from the book “The Little Prince.”

A small stacked book tattoo on the back of the neck.

A book tattoo quoting one of Charles Bukowski’s literary works.

In spite of how beautiful these tattoos are, you can still add more details to your own book tattoo to make it even more personalized. We still have plenty of awesome designs for book lovers like you. Thus, if you want to see more high-quality samples, just keep on visiting us for more. What was your favorite book tattoo design?

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About the author

Jason Hamilton

Jason has been an avid fan of tattoos for over 13 years now. He is currently 35 years old, and he got his first tattoo at the age of 22. Since then, he has added over 20 tattoos to his collection. He is also into writing, which is why he decided to celebrate both of his passion and hobby through tats ‘n’ rings. Jason dreams of having his very own tattoo parlor soon. Jason would be very happy to answer any questions about tattoos that you may have! Leave a comment below and he’ll answer it for you right away!

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